Kubiak’s praise for Hopkins already has run the gamut from “extremely special” to “obviously very gifted” and “very competitive.” Asked how quickly Hopkins might be ready for a major offensive role, Kubiak replied, “I’m expecting it right off the get-go.” Between Hopkins and a healthy Ben Tate, the Texans finally might possess enough playmakers to get past the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens in the AFC playoffs.
Tavon Austin has been the runaway No. 1 receiver in rookie drafts this summer, but DeAndre Hopkins ought to be in the mix. In fact, in a year without a first round pick at running back, Hopkins should be considered a potential No. 1 overall pick in WR-heavy formats.
Both Austin and Hopkins are expected to start right away, but the pie splits many fewer ways in Houston with only Andre Johnson as a significant threat for receptions. Moreover, while defenses might scheme to take Austin away, Hopkins figures to see single coverage. Matt Schaub is primed for a huge bounceback season this year and Hopkins is simultaneously a big reason why and the primary beneficiary.
Most importantly, while Austin profiles as a gadget player, Hopkins is a future No. 1. Don’t believe me? Check the heatmap.
For more information like this, check out the RotoViz College WR Career Graphs App.
RotoViz college wide receiver guru Jon Moore has been all over Hopkins from the beginning, explaining how the Clemson star faced a lot of SEC opponents over the past several years and torched them in a similar fashion to Julio Jones and A.J. Green. Meanwhile, I’ve previously demonstrated some disturbing parallels between Austin and Dexter McCluster. (Many are comparing Austin to Percy Harvin, and while that comp isn’t particularly accurate, it also may not be as encouraging as you think.)
Austin is currently the trendy player, but Hopkins has history and upside on his side. Pass on him at your own peril.